As soon as you’ve got your ideas together you will need to get a framework from which to start your business. Later we look at what’s involved in deciding which trading identity would be suitable for your business and also look at what’s involved in VAT. My advice is for you to read Chapter 10 when you feel ready for it. For now though, let’s look at some things you’ll need to consider when christening your new business and where your new venture is going to live.
Deciding on a name for your business
Choosing the right name for your business is important and is something you need to really think about because whatever name you give to your business will need to create the right image for potential customers.
Let’s say you’re planning to organise painting holidays in Cornwall. You could call your business simply ‘Painting Holidays in Cornwall’, but the obvious problem here is that it doesn’t give any more information than the obvious
Obviously you are never going to be able to answer all of these questions with the name of your business, but you can improve on the initial name by making it less restrictive and more imaginative. One of the problems with the original name is that it concentrates on two words painting and ‘holiday’. The difficulty here is that anyone interested in learning how to paint might get the impression that this business runs holidays for seasoned painters and not beginners, while experienced painters might find the word ‘holiday’ a turn off.
BEWARE OF CHOOSING CLICHE¤ NAMES
It’s also a good idea to avoid choosing a cliche´ business name. By this I mean something like Green Fingers Gardening Company or Joe’s Bloomers, or Harriet’s Heavenly Pastries etc. While names like these might seem like a good idea at the time just wait until you discover there’s already more than one of them in the country and suddenly your business isn’t unique after all.
The exception to the rule is when you’re absolutely certain that what you’re offering is going to be cheaper than offered by most other retailers, you should include this information somewhere in your title. Let’s say you’re planning to open an online fishing tackle shop where offering rock bottom prices is the basis of your marketing strategy
PERSONALISING THE NAME
You could also personalise your business name and call it something like Joe’s Fisherman’s Warehouse. Some businesses are ideal for this sort of personalisation, particularly if they involve looking after something that your customer treasures, like children, pets, gardens etc
While John Browne’s Dog Walking Service might seem boring and unimaginative, it does suggest to potential customers that John Browne and not someone unknown to them will be looking after their dog. Including your own name in your business name can under the right circumstances create a feeling of trust, which brings credibility.
So don’t be afraid to include your own name particularly if the business you’re planning to run involves looking after other people’s treasures.